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AP investigation uncovers mishandling of sexual harassment case in US Biathlon

Joanne Reid, of The United States, competes during the women 7.5 km sprint competition at the Biathlon World Cup event in Pokljuka, Slovenia, Jan. 5, 2023. The United States Biathlon national champion was sexually harassed and abused for years by a ski-wax technician while racing on the sport’s elite World Cup circuit, investigators found. When the two-time Olympian complained, Reid said she was told his behavior was just part of the male European culture. AP PHOTO / DARKO BANDIC

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MARTHA BELLISLE AND MARY SEDOR

AP Global Investigations correspondent Martha Bellisle, who has been racing biathlon for almost a decade and follows the sport closely, first became aware of problems with U.S. Biathlon and Joanne Reid when Reid was not named to the World Cup team for the 2023–24 racing season. She learned about sexual harassment claims last fall through others involved in the sport.

Bellisle landed an exclusive interview with Reid, who served as the gateway to other sources. She also scoured a confidential SafeSport report and interviewed numerous officials, as well as one of the accused.

Working with Top Stories Hub editor Mary Sedor, Bellisle produced an exclusive story that widely resonated with customers around the world and caught the attention of biathlon enthusiasts who called for accountability in the sport.

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